I’ve been waiting to write something insightful and sensible about the recent changes in Zimbabwe. Sometimes it’s better to wait and digest what has happened rather than rush into print. I’m afraid this is the best I can manage. Make of it what you will. — MM **************** The year was 1982. It had been … Continue reading Zimbabwe: The Goon Show, continued…
The readers of this blog will know that I am critical of current approaches to conservation. This because most current approaches don’t work. Conservationists never seem to be able to conserve anything. There are a few local success stories, but conservation needs to succeed on a much grander scale than is currently the case. My … Continue reading Pie In The Sky: Conservation and REDD+
It’s been a sad week for African wildlife. One branch of the The Church of Modern Conservation has been very busy with burning and banning. They continue to believe in the same failed strategies informed by their doctrine and dogma. They persuaded the South African government to reverse a 2013 decision to introduce a legal, regulated trade … Continue reading Burnings, Bannings and the Bereft – The Churches of Modern Conservation
Negative news from South Africa dominated the headlines last week, as President Jacob Zuma revealed that he is an uneducated oaf, completely lacking in the skills required of a President and contemptuous of the institutions of state. He also managed to wipe ZAR200 billion (about US$1.5 billion) off the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. That’s the same … Continue reading South Africa is Battered and Bruised but the Heart still Beats.
Aldo Leopold was quite simply, the conservationists conservationist. He was a quiet, considered man, a hunter, forester and a pioneering ecologist. The story of his environmental awakening from the 1920s through to the 1940s could teach modern African conservationists, as well as those animal rights advocates who oppose hunting, some important lessons. In my opinion, … Continue reading Aldo Leopold and Lessons for African Conservation
Conservation in Africa isn’t working. Elephant, rhinoceros, lion and many other species are declining. The overwhelming outcome of the campaign minded, single species, animal rights centred conservation organisations is the failure to conserve wildlife. The outcome of banning the trade in ivory, rhino horn or other wildlife products has been failure. It’s harsh criticism but … Continue reading Pay African Leaders to Conserve Wildlife. Not Conservationists.
Amidst the controversy around Cecil the Lion, people who are concerned about Africa, and especially the area where Cecil comes from, are missing the point. There is potential for far bigger problems in the region than the illegal killing of an old, if iconic lion. To be sure, Cecil is symptomatic of one of these … Continue reading There’s a Perfect Storm Brewing over South Central Africa.
For someone who is a strong supporter of freedom and individual rights it might be surprising to hear that I strongly support a role for traditional Chiefs in the daily governance of rural African life. Why? Chiefs are unelected, they are a relict of the past and the customary law they enforce is oppressive and … Continue reading In Africa – Chiefs rule. Sort of.
It has been said that the crisis of Africa is a crisis of governance. While this is true, I sometimes wonder at the astounding naivety of African governments when it comes to encouraging investment and industry. The partnership with China in Africa has exposed this naivety to a degree greater that I have seen for … Continue reading Build it and they will – not necessarily – come.